Wind energy – megaWHATs?

Wind power numbers are easy to find, but do not always make immediate sense. This month we heard that 32 GW of offshore wind generating capacity has been granted permission to go ahead in the UK. This seems like a lot. As of October 2009 the British Wind Energy Association reported 2,332 MW onshore and 598 MW offshore in operation. A new 125 MW farm announced in the news? Is this good? Is wind power doing well? Frustratingly, the figures generally require some conversion before the implications become clear.

In an attempt to de-obfuscate all of this, I thought the piece of paper by the computer covered with scribbled equations and statistics needed an upgrade. The result of this exercise is a wind energy calculator, available here for download. If you struggle to get a grip on the numbers, or if you once got your head round the matter but have since forgotten, this may help. Hopefully you’ll find it extremely simple to use and with just enough information to orientate and provide a bit of context, but not too much to bury you in data and lose the message.

I’ve included links at the bottom of the worksheet to all the data sources if you need them. If you have any comments, suggestions or, worst of all, spot any glaring glitches, do let me know – you can get in touch here.

Download the wind energy calculatorExcel 2007 file (.xlsx)

Download the wind energy calculator - Excel 97-2003 file (.xls)

One Comment

  1. Posted February 25, 2010 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    You could make it even easier and embed it as a Google document in this page!

2 Trackbacks

  1. [...] Wind energy – megaWHAT? – BLog http://www.brooklyndhurst.co.uk/blog/?p=271 – view page – cached Wind power numbers are easy to find, but do not always make immediate sense. This month we heard that 32 GW of offshore wind generating capacity has been granted permission to go ahead in the UK. This seems like a lot. As of October 2009 the British Wind Energy Association reported 2,332 MW onshore and 598 MW offshore in operation. A new 125 MW farm announced in the news? Is this good? Is wind… Read moreWind power numbers are easy to find, but do not always make immediate sense. This month we heard that 32 GW of offshore wind generating capacity has been granted permission to go ahead in the UK. This seems like a lot. As of October 2009 the British Wind Energy Association reported 2,332 MW onshore and 598 MW offshore in operation. A new 125 MW farm announced in the news? Is this good? Is wind power doing well? Frustratingly, the figures generally require some conversion before the implications become clear. View page [...]

  2. [...] A simple wind energy tool. Originally posted and described on Brook Lyndhurst site. It is an attempt to make wind energy a little clearer, particularly for understanding what the numbers, which tend to be a little confusing, mean. [...]

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